Following some information about the flamingo.
Flamingos are very beautiful birds. There are five or six subspecies, but they all have one in common: a light to intensive pink color, long legs and an arcuate bill and long neck.
The color is a result of the food with which they get carotinoids, for example algae. That is why young flamingos and the ones who get another food in the zoos usually have grey to white feathers.
What only few people know is that flamingos are good swimmers. But they don’t use this ability very often. With their long legs they can just walk through most waters.
When they stand, often one leg is tucked beneath the body so that they stand on only one leg. The reason for this is not fully understood yet, but researchers indicate that it might be because of body heat. They might lose too much temperature when both legs stand in the cold water.
The perfect home for flamingos are saline and alkaline lakes.
They are up to many thousands of individuals in one group. One subspecies in East Africa has even groups of up to a million flamingos.
Before breeding they split into breeding groups of only 15 to 50 birds. They form strong pair bonds of one male and one female who both establish and defend the nesting territories.
Also both sexes feed the chicks. In the first six days all of them stay together in the nesting sites.
When the chicks are around two weeks old, the parents leave them alone.
If you want to see those big groups of colorful birds, you should visit Lake Natron or Lake Manyara.